An aluminum mold was designed for fabrication of research quality composite tubes on a hot press (miniclave). This mold allows the pressure to be applied uniformly to the inner surface of a composite (prepreg tape) tube while a constant vacuum is also applied independently to the composite throughout the course of fabrication. With proper placement of stoppers and spacers inside the mold, various types of high quality unidirectional composites with fibers oriented either in the zero or 90 degree directions, respectively, were fabricated on a hot press. The mold design had less resin loss throughout fabrication compared to a conventional tubular mold. Physical and material tests have characterized the superior qualities of the resulting composite tubes.

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Kim, B. S., and May, 1990, “Polymeric Composite Tube Mold Design and Hygrothermal Stress Analysis of Composite Tubes,” Ph.D. dissertation, University of Missouri-Rolla, Rolla, MO, 65401.
Kim, B. S., and Lehnhoff, T. F., 1994, “Stresses Induced in Fiber-Reinforced Tubes Due to Changes in Temperature and Moisture,” ASME JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGY.
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